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Jewel of the Seas Cruise Review to Caribbean - Southern

Cruises: 4-6 cruises
Reviews: 2
Helpful Votes: 28

Overall rating:

4.4 out of 5
Jewel of the Seas

7 Night Southern Caribbean (San Juan Roundtrip)

Sail date: January 07, 2018

Ship: Jewel of the Seas

Cabin type: Balcony

Cabin number: 9650

Traveled as: Couple

Reviewed: 2 years ago

Review summary

We had never been to the Caribbean, which was why we selected this port intensive itinerary. In general though, one of the disappointments was never being able to see the ports at night. I wish more cruise lines would consider overnight stays so that you could get to know the ports better. But aside from that, we very much enjoyed our stay on Jewel and observed the staff to be very hard working and conscientious.

Embarkation

5 out of 5
Very quick and easy. Bags were delivered to our stateroom in less than an hour.

Ship experiences

Food and Dining

4 out of 5
The food in the dining room was very good for the most part, although a couple of dishes (onion soup for example) were a little too salty. Lots of choices in the Windjammer, although difficult for most of the food to stay warm. The service was outstanding in both locations. I had some concerns about the slippery tile in the windjammer near the beverage area and almost took a tumble a couple of times. Also enjoyed the coffee shop on several occasions. Did not eat in any of the specialty restaurants.

Onboard Activities

5 out of 5
My husband and I both greatly enjoyed our massages at the spa and felt very relaxed afterwards. I wished that someone had offered to give us a quick tour to show us the other amenities in the spa, but then again, I could have asked.

Pool

5 out of 5

Loved the adults only Sanctuary. Nice place to chill out and avoid the chaos and noise of the other public areas.

Service and Staff

5 out of 5

Ship Quality

4 out of 5
I had read some reviews that claimed that Jewel was run down, but I did not find that to be the case. Most areas seemed to be very well maintained. I did notice that some guests on our floor left room service food outside their rooms and this was left for several hours, so that clean up process could have been a little more efficient, but that was the only problem I noticed.

Cabin / Stateroom

5 out of 5
We found our cabin to be very spacious (except for the bathroom, but that's typical of cruise ships). We absolutely loved our balcony. Lots of storage areas. Bed was comfortable and we had no issues with the temperature controls. The sound proofing was excellent and we only heard our neighbors twice over the 7 days on the ship. Our cabin attendant Arthur was outstanding!

Ship tip

Don't write off this ship because it's a little smaller and older. The Jewel has a lot to offer.

Ports of call

San Juan, Puerto Rico

5 out of 5
For a variety of travel nightmare reasons, we were only able to enjoy a couple of hours in Old San Juan, but we thoroughly enjoyed the time there and wished we had been able to stay longer. Loved the colorful buildings and cobblestone streets. Very clean and we saw little sign of the terrible damage just a few months ago from the storm.

Frederiksted, St. Croix, U.S.V.I.

4 out of 5
Lovely island. We took the Bike St. Croix experience and very much enjoyed that. The tour guides made sure everyone was comfortable, and they were engaging and knowledgeable. Trip covered about 12 miles, but was not too draining as we stopped and started multiple times. I appreciated the opportunity to burn a few calories, given how much I was eating on the ship!

Philipsburg, St. Maarten

4 out of 5
We strolled around the Dutch beach area, which was nice - nothing extraordinary. I had heard that Orient bay was lovely so we hired a local cab to take us up there for $20. They warned us that this beach was clothing optional but we were OK with that. We did not realize that we were heading into the French side which had endured significant damage in the storms. Very sad to see that and we spoke at length about the whole experience with our cab driver who also took as back after we spent a couple hours at Orient Bay. They are trying to rebuild and keep their spirits up. Orient Bay was lovely, although most of the establishments had been badly damaged. There was one small restaurant open and we enjoyed hot dogs and rum punches there. Simple, but relaxing and easy.

Fort-De-France, Martinique

4 out of 5
Spent a couple of hours strolling around the town. Interesting architecture and market place - great way to observe the locals.

Bridgetown, Barbados

4 out of 5
Beautiful beaches and glorious blue ocean. Took a shipwreck snorkeling excursion (not through the Royal Caribbean). Only negative about that was that the tour guides did not tell us to inflate our vests, nor were we given flippers, so both my husband and I had a bit of panic while out in the open sea when we got a bit winded. The guides quickly helped us and we were fine afterwards, but it was frightening....I think they should encourage the guests to inflate their vests and/or provide flippers. The excursion included lunch, drinks and beach lounges at the Jolly Roger, so we spent a couple hours there after the snorkeling, just enjoying the beach and ocean.

St. George's, Grenada

3 out of 5
A bit run down, but very interesting. We were plagued with a bit of rain that day, so that made exploring a little more difficult.

Disembarkation

5 out of 5
Self disembarked and were able to leave the ship super quickly!
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